Village News, 12/14/17

Dear Village Neighbors / Friends,


As of yesterday, we have 317 FY18 members in our civic association leaving us about 33 ($330) short of objective and very short of 100% participation goal. We can make do without that $330, but would like to get back to our membership goal. Ideas? Please let us know if/when you get a new neighbor and please do tell new neighbors who arrive the village after 1 November 2017 get the FY18 membership free. Thanks to our Membership Chair, Julia Hale (Wythe Lane).


Coyote – By now you probably have heard that a coyote is suspected of killing a dog in the Annandale area. We also had more reports of fox roaming the village looking for food. I’m happy the wildlife is here to help control rodents and vermin, but they may also want an occasional cat or small dog or simply get tangled up with a curious or aggressive household pet. Look at the link below for more information about how to avoid such a situation.


USAF Band "Flash Mob" Presentation – Bruce and Suzanne Slawter (Vancouver Road) wanted to express season’s greetings to the village and offered the following:


            “Suzanne and I were fortunate to have experienced a repeat performance of this annual USAF Band "Flash Mob" presentation during their concert last Saturday night, at D.A.R. Constitution Hall in D.C. This video was taken (not by me, of course) the previous week at the Gaylord Hotel in Washington Harbor during the actual flash mob event.  Enjoy!”


Yard Waste – Thanks Jeff Carter (Ontario) – Republic’s last day for separate yard waste service is next Wednesday, 20 December. And then it will picked up again on Wednesday starting 7 March 2018. They may pick up small amount along with household trash, but not obliged to. Reminder that grass clippings, leaves and twigs should be placed in paper bags, personal containers, clear plastic bags or black plastic bags marked with an “X”.  Christmas trees up to 8 feet long will be collected on 3 and 10 January 2018. Please remove all decorations & tinsel before placing at the curb. Trees not picked up by the second Wednesday in January will be collected with the trash the following week. Pretty sure that American is on a similar schedule, but that can be verified at their website by those using that service.


Please don’t blow your leaves into the street thinking mystical fairies will come by to collect them for you. And, certainly don’t blow them into storm water intakes.


Let me know if you need a copy of the Republic agreement to sign and submit. Their address is at the top of the form. 


Fairfax County Winter Weather Guide – Assuming we’ll get more snow, visit this site for some helpful tips and programs From experience, we have learned to: 

  • lay in the supplies needed for a snow event before it begins so you can stay off the roads during the snow and as the VDOT crews work to clear the roads
  • park cars in your driveway when snow is forecasted
  • park cars bumper to bumper to eliminate having to dig each out separately. Dig out the lead car and those behind it should be able to use the same track
  • park only on one side of side streets to allow more road to be plowed when VDOT does send a crew to us. This will require coordination, but very doable; right?
  • lift windshield wipers so they don’t freeze to the windshield
  • keep an ice/snow scraper inside your home so you can clean your vehicle before opening its doors
  • Shovel the sidewalk in front of your home so that our mail can be delivered. Edged sidewalks make shoveling easier
  • Check on neighbors who may need assistance during and after snow storms
  • Drain outside water pipes and taps
  • Leaf blowers work well if the snow is powdery and if you get to it before accumulation.

Maybe you have other ideas to add to this list. If so, send to me, please.


2018 Community Directory Ad Rates – For your business or the business where you work, here are the 2018 ad rates 

  • Back cover (8x10") = $250.00
  • Inside Front or Back cover (8x10") - $225.00
  • Full page ad (8x10") - $150.00
  • Half page ad (5x8") - $100.00
  • Quarter page ad (4x5") - $60.00

The premium ad locations go quickly, contact Steve at Printing Ideas ( or 703/591-1708. Visit their website at


Upcoming Events:


            WS Village Christmas Party – Sunday, 17 December at Don & Susan Cheney’s 6702 Ontario Street home. Don & Susan will provide a nice fire, hot apple cider and treats for all to enjoy as we wait for Santa Claus and possibly Mrs. Claus to make a pre-Christmas visit to our village. You are also invited to bring holiday treats to share and a clearly marked gift for your child if you want Santa to present the present to him or her. Drop off those clearly marked gifts with your child’s name written on it before we start gathering at/about 6:30 PM. Santa believes that he will arrive at/about 7:10 PM. This is a fun family event that all of us can enjoy, regardless of the temperature. No matter your religion, come celebrate with neighbors and friends.


            Christmas Caroling – Jason & Kerri Henry will again lead a group of carolers from the Village West Pool to the Cheney’s home also on the 17th. They normally start walking and singing at/about 5:50 PM. Words to the carols will be provided to help make this another joyful, family event whether you join them or are serenaded by them if they pass by your home.


            Holiday Decorating Contest – You and your family are invited to drive the village to pick your top 5 holiday decorating winners based on whatever criteria you and your children want to use. Refer to the map in your directory to see each of the homes in the village during the evenings of the 14th through the 17th of December. Send your top 5 to me ( by late evening on the 18th.  We will tabulate the results and pick the top 3. We ask you for your top 5 to reduce the chance of ties. And then we place the highly coveted Holiday Decorating Contest Signs 1st – 3rd place on the respective yards. Cruise the village to enjoy the displays and contribute your judging results.


Village Seamstress – Amanda Dugan (Vancouver Road) does alterations out of her home. Amanda is a stay-at home mom of 4 girls and can sew pretty much anything. She hems pants, sews patches for uniforms (such as boy scouts), alters band uniforms, and loves to work on evening/prom wear. If interested, contact her by text or call to 571/365-8545.


Christmas Story - with meaning for all. I’ve told this before, but worth repeating. In northern Iraq, my wife and I noted that most Kurds in the Kurdish controlled areas also celebrated Christmas as did the Christians, Yazidis, Armenians, Turkmens and other “minorities”. In fact, each sect celebrated the other’s holidays as well as their own. Many of you know Mr. Haidar Sadiq due to his quality handyman work. He was our house manager in Zakho, Iraq and gave Suzanne and me good memories of Christmas. We returned to our house from Erbil where the two main political Kurdish parties (PUK and KDP) were locked in horrific fighting. Suzanne’s political job meant she had to confront the parties’ leadership; my self-imposed mission was to protect her. The fighting alone on Christmas Eve was disheartening, but then to drive back to Zakho through contested areas and ambush alleys made the evening very stressful. But when we got home, there was Haidar smiling from ear to ear. He and his staff and our guards had found, repaired and decorated an old, discarded artificial tree with handmade ornaments, ribbons and bows. Haidar made that Christmas very special and certainly memorable. Perhaps he represented the true Christmas spirit - peace, tolerance and understanding; who knows?


Merry Christmas Haidar and West Springfield Village!


John Cooley



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